When you’re choosing a dog, one thing you definitely don’t want to be surprised by is his shedding level. That’s why we polled 249 veterinary professionals (veterinarians, vet techs and office managers) to learn which dog breeds they think shed the most. Some of the breeds that made the top 10 probably won’t surprise anyone — most of us know the Siberian Husky is a full-fledged fur factory — but there are quite a few dogs on this list we think will surprise you! See what our experts had to say in the gallery below and let us know in the comments if you agree.
10. Saint Bernard
Saint Bernards actually come in two coat types: short haired and long haired. And (surprise!) they both shed! Short-haired Saints have dense, smooth coats, while the long-haired ones sport medium-length, slightly wavy fur. Whichever kind of Saint Bernard you have, plan to brush him a couple times a week.
9. Great Pyrenees
Known for his gorgeous white coat and plumed tail, the Great Pyrenees's showstopping beauty does require a bit of maintenance. Brush his double coat a few days a week to keep it clean and remove dead hair — the hairs you get out with a brush are ones that don't end up shedded on your furniture!
8. Chow Chow
Chow Chows, like many of the breeds on this list, shed heavily twice a year in what's called "blowing their coat." A warm bath and a very thorough blow-drying can help remove a lot of that loose fur all at once, making cleanup much easier for you.
The Akita's dense double coat helped keep her warm in her homeland, Japan's cold and mountainous Akita prefecture from which she gets her name. When cared for properly, her fur has little odor and sheds dirt easily.
6. Siberian Husky
Siberian Husky aficionados won't be surprised to find the much-adored sled dog on this list — his medium-length double coat gives him the Arctic appearance we love. Although he doesn't have the high-maintenance grooming needs of, say, a Poodle, frequent brushing will help curb his year-round shedding.
5. Golden Retriever
You may have heard the Golden Retriever called "the perfect family dog," but if shedding is a total deal breaker in your home, this may not be the breed for you. The Golden's dense, water-repellent double coat benefits from daily brushing to remove mats and dead hairs, but even that won't completely eliminate shedding. Hey, at least she's smiling while she covers your black sofa with golden fur!
4. German Shepherd
There's a reason the German Shepherd's fans lovingly refer to him as a "German Shedder." Plan to bring out your heavy-duty vacuum cleaner often during the spring and fall, when his undercoat sheds heavily. And don't bury it too deep in a closet the rest of the year either!
3. Labrador Retriever
Another family favorite, the Labrador Retriever sheds considerably. Labradors have a soft undercoat covered by a short, protective outer layer. A solid brushing a couple times a week makes fur cleanup easier. And, clearly, the Lab's many endearing qualities more than make up for the grooming she requires, as the breed is the most popular dog in America!
2. Alaskan Malamute
You can take one look at the massive Alaskan Malamute and see why he's No. 2 on this list: lots of dog + lots of fur = lots of shedding. His thick, coarse double coat has helped keep him warm for hundreds of years, starting in the Alaskan tundra where he was bred to pull heavy loads.
1. Alaskan Husky
The Alaskan Husky isn't typically owned as a companion dog, and that could be why you've likely never heard of her. Technically, she's not a breed at all, but rather a type of dog created by mushers in Alaska and Canada based on the qualities they require for certain jobs: strength for hauling logs, speed for competing in races or stamina for traveling long distances. One thing these dogs generally have in common is shedding, thanks to their Spitz heritage.